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The Hifold Fit & Fold travel booster from MiFold is the brand’s latest product. It follows the original MiFold, a travel booster which which was described as ‘the world’s most compact car seat’. The brand describes the Hifold as ‘the world’s most adjustable and portable high-back booster’.
In the UK, older kids are required to travel with a booster until they are 12, or 135cm tall, and a travel booster is really handy when going abroad or having to jump in a taxi, or to have in the boot of the car for ad hoc guests and playdates.
Many travel boosters are simple seats that ‘boost’ the child’s height, so that the car’s seatbelt is easier to use. Some also have a clip that adjusts the seatbelt’s position slightly, such as the Trunki Boostapak (£49.99 on Amazon) or the original MiFold Grab and Go.
The innovative Hifold, however, is a fully fledged high-back booster, with side impact protection and a headrest with side protection. It is fully adjustable to a growing child (with 243 combinations in total according to MiFold), with the seat sides, the headrest height and width and even the seat width able to expand or rise.
When not in use, it folds down to an impressively small and light package, the size of a small rucksack, which makes this product a very tempting option for those looking to travel a lot.
Anna is a mum-of-2 who tested the Hifold with her 6-year-old daughter and 4-year-old son. She tested it on longer and shorter journeys to see how it holds up on comfort.
What were your first impressions?
The Hifold impresses immediately. It is truly tiny and light – for a high-back booster – but it feels very well made, with smooth and sturdy lines.
What age is the Hifold suitable for?
The Hifold is suitable for children aged 4 to 12 or weighing between 15 to 45kg (or up to 150cm), which makes it more versatile than many other travel boosters out there.
The fact that it has guides for both the lap and shoulder belts as well as headrest protection makes me much happier and more confident to use this booster for my younger child.
How easy is it to install?
If you are used to car seats, you will know already that a high-back booster without Isofix needs to be installed using the car’s own seatbelt. This is quite self-explanatory, and the fact that the Hifold is very light, makes this easy too.
The only drawback is that it doesn’t immediately feel quite as secure as an Isofix booster. However, the seatbelt guides are really clear and do a fantastic job at keeping everything in the correct position.
How do you install the Hifold?
When you first use the Hifold, make sure you unfold it completely (every element should click securely into place, when you unfold it), and extend and raise all elements to maximum, before you place it in the car. Now ask your child to sit in it, before adjusting height and width to suit your child.
It is definitely worth watching the excellent instruction video from the brand, as it explains everything, making use much easier.
The fact that the seat is so adjustable, makes it slightly more of a hassle to quickly change between kids. But that’s not really a problem if you’re confident in how everything adjusts.
What are the key safety features of the car seat?
The Hifold is a unique product in that it’s a foldable, high-back booster for travel. Therefore, it’s very difficult to compare its safety credentials. There is nothing quite like it. But personally, I love that it is high-back, with a headrest and side wings for extra protection.
It is certified for most global travel. According to the brand it is compliant or exceeds the following safety standards: ECE R44.04 in the UK and Europe, NHTSA FMVSS 213 in the US, the CCC in China and the RSSR in Canada.
In addition, it has 6 impact-protection zones made with a 4-layer design, which includes a high density, viscous memory foam inside the headrest and side rests.
Especially when using the seat with younger kids, I find these features and safety credentials really reassuring. I am very wary when it comes to in-car safety for my children, and I would definitely opt for the Hifold over a simple booster seat without additional impact protection for my younger child. This product is a real game-changer for me.
Are there any unique features of the Hifold?
The Hifold is unlike anything on the market – a super compact travel booster, that includes a headrest and extra side-impact safety. When folded it measures an impressively small 25 x 34.4 x 34.4cm. It also has great, easy-to-use and secure seatbelt guides which make its use very easy and safe, in any hire car or taxi.
How does the Hifold compare to other compact travel boosters?
The Hifold has a very different USP to other travel boosters. The ingenious Trunki Boostapak, for example, offers a sturdy booster that can also be used as a kid’s rucksack, while offering ad hoc safety when you’re on the move.
The Hifold is heavier than the Boostapak (4.6kg, versus 1.8kg), and isn’t quite as compact when folded. But it offers what the Trunki and others don’t – a headrest, with additional levels of protection for your child’s body.
When unfolded it provides a shell that many parents will find more reassuring to use. According to my 6-year-old tester, it was also more comfortable than a normal booster seat, as it has the headrest, and didn’t seem quite as hard.
How comfortable did your child find the car seat?
My 6-year-old daughter thought it was very comfortable. Due to the angle of our car seat back, the Hifold lent quite far back, which she really liked. The Hifold feels much flimsier and less soft than a non-travel high-back booster, but my daughter didn’t complain about the comfort at all.
My 4-year-old also really liked it. He felt very snug in it – it seemed to fit him really well – I was impressed with how it adjusted to both my kids’ size.
How well did it work with different age children?
I find the adjusting of the seat a bit counter-intuitive, so it did take me quite a few attempts to adjust it properly between children.
However, the fact that it does adapt so well, with so many different sizes means it works perfectly with different age children. It looked good for both my kids, once properly adjusted.
How robust does the car seat feel? Do you think it will last?
The materials feel very good quality. However, you can’t get away from the feeling that this really is a ‘travel’ product. It feels much less sturdy than a full high-back Group 2/3 car seat, and both my kids wriggled around in it much more when strapped in.
My daughter could literally lean sideways in it – with the whole seat tipping. You need to really remind your kids to sit straight when using this seat – much more policing required.
Also, the fact that this seat is foldable and adjustable in so many ways is fantastic, but I can’t help thinking that all these moving parts mean it’s less durable. This is just my impression though, and the car safety credentials of the Hifold did reassure me on this front. For example, the shell is made of 4 layers including a layer of cushioning, shock-proofing EPE foam.
Does it recline?
It does not recline, but it adjusts well to the car’s seat back.
How effective is the headrest on the Hifold?
I think it’s fantastic that this travel booster has a full height headrest that is adjustable as your child grows. My daughter sometimes still uses a car journey to rest, and to be able to lean her head against a rest – and the additional safety this provides – is fantastic. Much preferable to the non-backrest boosters for us.
How easy is it to clean?
The Hifold has removable and washable AirFlow fabric, which means it’s great if you need to machine wash it. But minor spills can also be easily wiped.
How portable is the Hifold?
It is very easy to carry the Hifold around. It weighs only 4.6kg, has a carry strap and comes with a storage/carry bag, so it’s really no trouble at all – super handy!
In addition, it folds so small that it fits in airplane overhead lockers, which provides great peace of mind when travelling. It means you know your car seat doesn’t get bashed about by luggage handlers, and you always have it to hand.
Is the car seat big enough for a growing child?
The Hifold is suitable for children from 4 to 12 years, or weighing between 15 to 45kg, or up to 150cm. My daughter is 6 and last time I measured her she was around 130cm. Yet, I had to extend the headrest to its highest position. So unfortunately, I am not sure whether it will last up to 150cm as stated.
What’s in the box?
Car seat and carry rucksack. The instructions are tucked under the car seat’s cover.
What are the additional accessories that you can buy?
There are no additional accessories that you need to buy. It’s great that the storage bag is included.
What would you have liked to know before purchasing the Hifold?
It’s definitely worth watching the instruction video and reading the instructions in great detail, then the Hifold will be your ideal, long-serving safety companion. There were no nasty surprises here.
Is this car seat worth the money?
At £155, the Hifold is very expensive for a travel booster. You can buy boosters for much less. However, it is unique and well designed. It offers additional safety features, and the fact that it’s so adjustable means it’s very versatile and will last a number of years, for a variety of kids. Those factors make it worth the money to me.
Where can I buy the Mifold booster?
A fantastic product that fills the need for a compact travel booster that has the extra safety of a high back and side impact protection. It is brilliantly adaptable, so can be used in lots of different situations, for kids of many shapes and sizes.
It is a great car seat for those looking for a portable option (either for traveling or storing at grandparents’ house) that provides versatility and superior protection. It’s also ideal for those looking to go abroad, whether by train or airplane, and those who don’t want the risk and uncertainty – and expense – of hiring sub-standard car seats.
Those who need to fit three car seats in the back of a car should also consider this as an option, as it is very slimline.
If it’s as durable as it feels, it will be a very useful addition to many families’ requirements.
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Dimensions & Weight
|Child age (approx)||3 years to 12 years – Weight depending|
|Child weight||15kg to 45kg|
|Child Height||36in to 59in|
|Car seat installation||Seat belt|
|Travel system compatible||No|
|Positions of carry handle||1|
|Removeable cover for washing||Yes|
|Side crash protection||Yes|
|Height adjustible headrest||Yes|